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Committee approves Bull Falls Brewery asset sale | Weekly Wausonian
Wausau News for the week of June 8, 2023
The Economic Development Committee Tuesday approved allowing the sale of Bull Falls Brewery’s tangible assets ahead of an upcoming auction.
The Wausonian was the first to report that Bull Falls had listed its assets — brewing equipment and the like — on an auction site that also offered the business for sale. Bull Falls ignored requests for comment from The Wausonian about the auction listing but later issued a press release that the business was for sale.
The city needs to approve any asset sales under the terms of the development agreement from 2012. The city has third ranking on Bull Falls’ mortgage and city attorney Ann Jacobson says that the sale of Bull Falls’ real estate is the most likely way the city would recover money it spent on the project.
Bull Falls received a $200,000 grant and a $400,000 for its 2012 expansion, in a TIF district consistently largely of just the brewery. The Wausonian reported that Bull Falls still owes $300,000 to the city, and is behind about $15,000 on its payments to the city.
The auction site, New Mill Capital, still lists the equipment but no longer lists a start date to an auction.
Clarification: This story was updated to clarify that the Economic Development Committee approved the sale, but it still needs to go through the city council.
More stories this week:
What else in Wausau?
Crumbling housing: City leaders are considering what to do to help Metro Plains, which owns the Federal Lofts building in downtown. The building, under which the city owns the land, needs about $190,000 in brick repairs and Metro Plains only has $70,000 in its reserves, as the repairs came sooner than expected. They’re hoping for a loan from the city, but loan repayments might replace the lease payments the company pays to the city.
Music mashup: City leaders are seeing a feasibility study on the new proposed concert venue, The River. The 3,500-person venue is projected to bring in 250,000 ticket sales annually, its proposers say. But others such as The Grand Theater’s director question those projections and whether the project can be successful at all (he also said it would directly draw dollars from The Grand). More on that in a later post from The Wausonian.
City breaking up with NCHC: City leaders on Tuesday voted to sell 1408 Bissel Street, a city-owned house leased to NCHC to house people that are severely handicapped, according to city leaders. NCHC is no longer going to use the property, so the city plans to list it with a real estate agency.
Sawmill rebuild: City leaders say they’re working with a firm to determine the feasibility of rebuilding an old sawmill. The city dismantled the sawmill at First Avenue and Bridge Street in 2012, storing the boards in a person’s garage in Rib Falls to one day be rebuilt. It’s the last sawmill from the logging era in Wausau. Potential plans include rebuilding it as a market building near the Wausau Farmers Market, but those plans aren’t finalized. Potential cost: $1.7 million. (Oh, and most of the boards can’t be reused, it turns out.)
Ramp closed: The McClellan Ramp officially closed last week. The entrances and first-floor openings are fenced off, so no one can enter the building. The city is expected to tear down the downtown ramp, which has reached the end of its life, sometime next year.
Around the metro
County childcare?: County officials are looking at the possibility of a childcare facility on the NCHC/Health Department campus. Lance Leonhard said the area they’re looking at was once used for childcare, and the county is working with an area provider to see if it would meet modern childcare regulations.
Village vote: The town of Rib Mountain will hold an election to determine whether or not the town ought to become a village. Rib Mountain officials two years ago started the process of becoming a village in order to gain better autonomy and protect against annexation. The election will be held July 11, and will operate similarly to any other election, Rib Mountain Administrator Gaylene Rhoden told WAOW.
Saturday, June 10: Are you looking for a physical challenge? Hiking up Rib Mountain is already a pretty good challenge — but making your way up the ski run side, over some of the most challenging terrain, is really a feat. The Ironbull Solstice Summit is a challenge you won’t take lightly, with three different options for difficult climbs up the mountain. And, unlike most athletic events, this one takes place in the evening. Check out the event page for more.
Saturday, June 10: Describing The Driftless Revelers as a bluegrass band just doesn’t quite do the band justice. They’ve got a lot more in common with Lou and Peter Berryman than they do the typical bluegrass act. And that already intrigues me. With influences from blues to jazz, The Driftless Revelers’ sound is like if a group of talented musicians had never heard bluegrass before, which gives them the freedom to create without adhering to the conventions of the genre. Mix in some Wisconsin references and this will be a great act to take in. 7 pm. Check out more events at Malarkey’s Pub’s Facebook page.
Thursday, June 8: Cole Holiday, local harmonica and guitar player, will be taking on Sconni’s Alehouse and Eatery. Sconni’s patio makes for a relaxing and scenic place to take on some music, and it ought to be especially nice with Holiday providing some tunes in an acoustic set. Also nice - it starts at 5 pm so you don’t have to stay up super late. Check out Sconni’s on Facebook for updates.
Local TV stars in the making: The first episode of Season 2 of Crime Scene Kitchen premiered on FOX last Monday. Why are we talking about that here? Because one of the contestant teams this season are the two women who started Cup N Cake and bought Kreger’s Bakery in Wausau. They’ll take on other teams to try to piece together the identity of a dessert from a handful of clues and then bake it. The show runs at 8 pm Mondays, but if you miss the first episode, find it here (warning, it’ll start an hour preview window and the timer doesn’t stop, so don’t go to the link until you want to watch it.)
Looking for kids/family events? Check out the family-oriented listing from The Wausonian’s partner Wausau Mama, who puts together a weekly listing of children/family activities.
Baseball: D.C. Everest made it to the sectional quarter final, but the Evergreens’ season came to an end with a 16-6 loss to No. 2-seeded Hudson Tuesday. Hudson fell to No. 1-seeded SPASH in the sectional final. The Panthers will continue on to the state tournament. West fell to SPASH earlier in the tournament.
Girls Soccer: The No. 3-seeded D.C. Everest fell to Eau Claire Memorial 2-0 Saturday, ending its post-season play.
Boys Tennis: D.C. Everest’s Colin Belton fell in the first round of the WIAA tournament, losing in straight sets to Everett Reid of Madison West. Belton was the Wausau area’s only entrant into the tourney.
College baseball: The Wausau Woodchucks are on a two-game losing streak after dropping a game to the Wisconsin Rapids Rafters 3-0 on Tuesday. Despite the loss, the Woodchucks are 6-3 this season so far, tied for first with the Green Bay Rockers in the Great Lakes West division of the Northwoods League. The Chucks have away games with the Rafters and the Madison Mallards before returning home to host the Mallards Friday.
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